Saturday, February 21, 2009

head above water

Sorry for the sudden drop-off in updates this week, but I have been negotiating the transition from stay-at-home back to work, and have thus been a little...harried. I think that I mentioned this in a previous Twitter, but when you work outside the home, your evening parenting experience picks up this unfortunate utilitarian flavor. Basically, I'm running in the door, taking the quickest shower possible (to cleanse my skin of the multi drug-resistant microbes), and it's this breathless race of MAKE DINNER FEED DOG FEED BABY GIVE THE KIDS BATHS SNACK FEED BABY BEDTIME FOR EVERYONE GO GO GO that fails to elicit the heartfelt talks and snuggling that might manifest in a more relaxed pace of parenting spread out over several more hours. And there's the unfortunate feeling that I don't get enough time to spend with my kids, which is probably true--on Thursday after I got home, I fed Mack, and he proceeded to sleep for basically the rest of the evening into bedtime. I know it's bad mojo to wake a sleeping baby, but by 8pm, I was coughing loudly and poking him in the belly with one finger just so I could at least play with him a little bit before I had to go to bed myself. (During the work week, I go to bed on average between 8:30 and 9:00pm. Much like your grandmother.)

Adjustment back to work was another issue. I have never been away from clinical anesthesia for six whole weeks before (I didn't do any research electives during residency or anything like that, and when I took my maternity leave with Cal, those six weeks didn't count because I had just started my anesthesia residency three weeks prior to that so I didn't know enough to forget), and I have to say, I was a little afraid of being rusty. And while the truth of the matter is that while my hands didn't get rusty--muscle memory is a powerful thing, see also: riding a bike--but my brain feels rusty, having not been thinking about anything close to medicine (aside from a smattering of self-centered OB and Peds) for a month and a half. So that was a little disconcerting. I'm sure it'll just take a little time, and a little reading, to get my wits about me again, but it makes you realize just how cerebral the practice of anesthesia is. Which is why I'm sure no one understands what we do, because all they see is us standing there, watching the patient and frowning.

Also this week (because you know how much I just love to make my big moves all at once--IT'S ALL OR NOTHING, BABY), I submitted my second round of manuscript revisions to my editor. Honestly, I've read this manuscript so many times by this point that I don't even trust that if there are any glaring errors or discontinuities, I will catch them--but I do think that it's pretty OK and fairly close to the final product that I had envisioned. I don't know, we'll see. Of course I will still have to read through it fifteen million more times, but I am looking forward to moving on from the words-on-a-screen stage to the hey-this-might-actually-be-a-real-book-that-people-will-read stage. That will be fun.

So that's that. Oh, and I keep trying to take a picture of Mack smiling (it seems like he's actually doing it on purpose now, just starting this past week), but I never have my camera close by when he's doing it, and whenever I run and get my camera I can't get him to smile anymore. Perhaps I need a more hilarious camera.

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